Echinopsis Cactus: How to grow the most popular succulent?

Echinopsis Cactus

Green, prickly, round – this is what the Echinopsis Cactus looks like, which is the most common indoor plant of the Cactus family. It is notable for its compactness, ability to multiply abundantly, and with proper care and regular flowering. Also, the genus Echinopsis includes many species, which means that a lover of these succulents has something to choose from and even create their own “prickly”, but a charming collection.

General Info


Echinopsis – a genus of succulents, belonging to the Cactus family. Its name comes from the Greek “echinopsis” – hedgehog and “opsis” – similar. This name, which was suggested by Carl Linnaeus back in the 30s of the 18th century, plants are very suitable, because of the abundance of thorns and spherical shape, they look like hedgehogs curled into balls.

The Echinopsis area extends from Northern Bolivia to Southern Argentina. And they are also found in the flora of Uruguay and Southern Brazil. They grow in the Andes, in valleys, and the edges of mountain ranges.

Echinopsis have gained huge popularity in indoor floriculture. In European countries, they have grown approximately from the end of the 16 to – early 17 century. In the cultural selection of representatives of the genus are involved since 1837 and to date, it has been possible to obtain a large number of hybrid forms, different colors.

Echinopsis hybrids are also common among flower growers, as well as zigocactuses. In this case, they not only do not lose popularity but also continue to be of interest to both cactus growers and breeders.

How to take care of room Echinops?

The care for these succulents is not burdensome, they have enough standard procedures. But it is necessary to take into consideration some climatic preferences of these plants so that they feel comfortable in an ordinary apartment.

Lighting and Location

Echinopsis need a long day of light and should be placed on the best-illuminated window sill. Even in the active sun, they do not need to be shaded. Cactuses also need plenty of light during the winter holidays, so it is advisable to install additional phyto- or fluorescent lamps. Experienced florists advise not to change the position of the container in which the flower grows to light, even when moving it to a new place.

Temperature mode

It is directly related to the season:

In spring and summer, the air temperature can vary from +20 to +30 degrees.

In winter this index is considered ideal if the thermometer column is kept at +7 – +10 degrees. But it is allowed to increase the temperature to +15 degrees.

Echinopsyns are not afraid of sharp temperature changes, except for some hybrid varieties. In summer, succulents can be carried out in the open air – a loggia, veranda, or balcony.

But these cactuses can get sick from drafts, so it is best to protect them from such adverse events.

Air humidity

Echinopsis are insensitive to air humidity, so you don’t have to worry about its additional moisturizing. These flowers also do not need to be sprayed.

They are resistant to dry periods, but pets can periodically take a warm shower to cleanse them from dust and dirt. The procedure is carried out with care, covering the soil with a film to prevent it from overflowing.

Watering Features

Like all cactuses, succulent hedgehogs prefer a rare watering, when moisture is applied only after the soil layer is completely dry to the middle of the pot:

In the spring-summer period, the flower is on average watered once every 1.5-2 weeks.
In autumn, the frequency of watering is reduced and reduced to a minimum.
In winter, when the succulent rests in the cool, it can not be irrigated at all.
Water is used warm, room temperature, pre-permanent for 1-2 days.

A suitable mixture of soil

Cactus Mixture Of Soil

Echinopsyns need a light, permeable, loose, neutral substrate. You can buy it in the store by choosing a product marked “for cacti”.

Experienced florists prefer to prepare soil mixes themselves. Soil mixtures for cactus hedgehogs should consist of the following components:

2 parts of turf;
1 part of the leafy soil;
1 part of coarse sand;
0.5 parts of fine gravel.
All ingredients are decontaminated and mixed. Charcoal is considered a useful additive, it reduces the risk of root rot development.

Transplanting process

Echinopsis are transplanted once in 2-3 years in the spring period when their root system fills the space of the pot and the flower itself abundantly grows:

  1. You should prepare a wide and shallow pot, a little more than the old one.
  2. But also need to take care of drainage and soil substrate.
  3. The soil in the pot is abundantly spilled and carefully extracted cactus.
  4. The pot is washed under a jet of warm water and dried in the air.
  5. A thick layer of drainage and a little soil is poured into the new pot.
  6. The succulent is planted and the remaining space is filled with soil.
  7. After the event, Echinops should be a little watered and the soil mulched with vermiculite or small stones.

Fertilizer application

These flowers need additional fertilization only in the flowering period and after its completion. They are fertilized once every 3-4 weeks by complex mineral mixtures, combining the procedure with irrigation. Occasionally, you can nourish succulent organics, but without much effort, as nitrogen, it requires a very limited amount.

Concentrated formulas should be diluted more than indicated in the instructions, as they can burn the delicate roots of the cactus.


Most of the Echinopsis are extremely fertile and in a short time are covered by babies who take food from the mother. To avoid this, it is better to remove them from the cactus using a blade or sharp knife.

In mature plants at the base may form cork tissue in the form of a ring brown. In this situation, it is better to rejuvenate the succulent; for this purpose, its tip is cut and rooted.
The cuts should be dried and covered with activated carbon powder. And then place a part of the cactus above water.

Thanks to this procedure, it is possible to preserve the hybrid Echinops, which has a noticeably deformed stem during growth.

Echinopsis hibernation

Hybernation Succulents

Not always the florist has the opportunity to place succulents in a cool room for the winter. But, you can still bring the conditions of their winter maintenance to ideal:

An old aquarium is placed sideways, and a pot with a plant is placed in it.
Then it is moved close to the window with the open side.
This way, the flower can get maximum natural light and the temperature in the tank will be lower than in the room. Such conditions should be maintained throughout the winter, the cactus during this period do not water.

How to reproduce room Echinops?

There are several methods for this and each has several advantages:

Echinops with Seed Material

The seeds are soaked in warm water for 3-4 hours and then treated with potassium permanganate solution. They should be decomposed on the surface of the moistened soil mixture, a little buried, and cover the container with polyethylene or glass.

Covering material is removed after the appearance of buds. Seedlings are transplanted into separate cups when they form the first thorns and well-developed root systems.


The most simple and effective method, which flower growers resort to more often. The required number of children cut, they are lightly dried and put in damp soil. To keep them in an upright position and do not fall, you can use sticks or stones as support.

Water the sprouts as needed, avoiding overwetting the soil. When the “baby hedgehogs” form 10-15 mm spines they can be transplanted.

Echinopsis are often used for catching up, but the event is successful only if the cambium layers of the two copies of the most accurately combined. This method is possible to cross “hedgehogs” of different species. Privoyayut cut and rooted when he gets stronger, but to keep it longer than 1-2 years on the basement plant is not recommended.

Why does not the succulent flower?

Succulents Flower

Echinopsis are resistant to all kinds of changes, but the cactus reacts to significant violations, including the absence of flowering. There are several main reasons for this:

Lack of cold overwintering.
Lack of light.
Long-lasting droughts.
Excessive fertilization.
The formation of a large number of children.
Too spacious capacity.
The affection of the succulent insect pests.
Rotating or moving the pot with a flower during the laying of buds, it simply drops them.
You can solve the problem with flowering by detecting and removing the disturbance. Usually, Echinops react with gratitude to positive changes.

Diseases and pests

The health of these little cactuses is excellent, but the room copies can get sick if the microclimate of the room does not suit them or there is no competent care. Most often they suffer from rotting, bacterial, or viral diseases.

Fungal diseases can be saved by fungicides. It makes no sense to treat diseases caused by bacteria or viruses, most often, the affected flowers are better to dispose of, so that they do not infect healthy plants.

Pests disturb prickly succulents infrequently, but flowers may still encounter worms, red spiderwort, nematodes, and a shield. If the above-ground part is affected, the parasites should be removed with warm water and treated with chemicals. If the pest is wound up in the root system, the cactus must be transplanted with a mandatory root examination and removal of the affected parts. The root is treated with manganese solution and the soil is spilled with a suitable insecticide.

The most common types of room echinopsis

Room Echinopsis

According to recent data, the genus of these succulents includes 131 species. Not all of them are grown as room flowers, but many species are still suitable for this purpose. Most often in the collections of flower growers are the following varieties:

Echinopsis sharpened

This cactus has a thick spherical-shaped stem, which can be up to 20 cm in diameter. As it grows, it stretches out, has 13-15 sharp ribs with the areola, from which grow thorns.

Young specimens of thorns have a yellow color with dark tips, but with age, they acquire a brown, almost black shade. Flowers are pink and white, 8-10 cm in diameter.

Succulent with a large number of children can have from 11 to 18 ribs with tiny, 4-5 mm thorns. In the upper part of the plant are well visible, pubescent areola.

Flowers consist of several rows of broad, acuminate petals of tender pink, saturated hue.

Leucantha (white-flower)

This got its name thanks to the white colors. The same succulent consists of a bright, dark green stem, which has a smooth, slightly wavy face. Looks white flower cactus as a column height up to 35 cm, its diameter does not exceed 12 cm.


It is a spherical succulent, which retains this shape even as it grows. Mamylose has lumps with yellowish thorns up to 1 cm on its ribs. The flowers consist of wide pink petals growing in several layers.

Azura (golden)

One of the smallest representatives of the genus, reaching a height of 10 cm. Originally shaped like a ball, but later stretched out, its tip remains flattened. The succulent has 15 ribs with areola and golden-brown thorns. Bright yellow-colored flowers, 6-8 cm in diameter.


Another compact cactus, which does not exceed 8-10 cm in size. It also grows as a ball with a flattened tip, the stem consists of a large number of ribs, they can be up to 20 pieces. On the areola with light brown thorns, their 4-10 and the central spike is bent with a hook. Flowers at the ankistophora are large, with a 10 cm whisk and 12-15 cm tube.

Escordius subdenudata

Succulents Cactus

Echinopsis of subdenudate has practically no thorns, from the pubescent light areola lookout 1-2, less often 3 small thorns. The stem is of spherical, flattened shape, with 10-12 pointed edges.

Blossoms with large white flowers opening at night. It is an excellent basement plant.

Also, there are many hybrid varieties with improved characteristics. Such succulents grow slowly and practically do not give side shoots, so they keep their decorative appearance for a long time. Also, many hybrids bloom more abundantly than their “wild” counterparts and have more interesting and original colors.

But, despite the abundance of species, all Echinops cacti need the same conditions of maintenance and care, for good growth and development at home.


Echinopsis is a succulent that is widely used in room floriculture. It has a mass of positive properties, the cactus is compact, undemanding, cute, and suitable even for beginners florists. And if you take care of the “hedgehog” properly, it will regularly delight in a charming flowering.